We were delighted to read this wonderful article in The Wren magazine about WWII veteran and member of the Taxi Charity family, Marie Scott. Taxi Charity chairman, Ian Parsons, is also featured.
On Saturday 4 December 2021, Kingston-upon-Thames Branch marked a significant milestone in recognition of a very special lady, Marie Scott, who joined the Branch in 1993.
On joining the Branch, Marie immediately became a member of the inaugural Committee, retiring at 95 in 2021, having served 28 years is certainly ‘extra long service’!
We are very proud of Marie our WWII veteran, who served at Fort Southwick on D-Day and is holder of The Legion of Honour Award, the National Order of the Legion of Honour (French: Ordre national de la Légion d’honneur), formerly the Royal Order of the Legion of Honour (Ordre royal de la Légion d’honneur), which is the highest French order of merit both military and civil.
Established in 1802 by Napoleon Bonaparte, it has been retained (and slightly altered) by all later French governments and régimes. The order’s motto is Honneur et Patrie (“Honour and Country”), and its seat is the Palais de la Legion d’Honneur next to Musée d’Orsay on the left bank of the Seine in Paris.
This occasion could not pass by without celebration and recognition of Marie’s achievements therefore our Christmas meeting presented a great opportunity to mark this special occasion but required much subterfuge (MI5 has nothing on Wrens!) to make it a day full of surprises to include in our day her daughter, Cari, and granddaughter Briony as our guests.
Thanks must go to Briony in achieving the MI5 experience! We were delighted to have as our VIP - Guest of Honour Ian Parsons, Chairman of The Taxi Charity for Military Veterans, who spoke and later made the presentation to Marie, as he knows her and the family well as he took her in his taxi to Pegasus Bridge for the presentation of the ‘Ordre national de la Légion d’honneur’ by President Emmanuel Macron.
Following a delicious buffet, Ian spoke about The Taxi Charity for Military Veterans which was formed in Fulham in 1948 and offers international trips to Holland, Belgium and France, day trips to concerts or museums, transport to attend fundraising events, as well as special days out to catch up with friends and comrades.
The charity received recognition for its unfailing work during the pandemic.
The Branch also were delighted to be able, with the generosity of members through the raffle and donations, to present Ian with a cheque to the value of £100 for the Taxi Charity.
Ian then presented, much to Marie’s surprise, a framed print of Wrens’ uniforms throughout the ages. Over the years Ian and his wife Anne, got to know Marie’s family, not only in UK but her daughter and son-inlaw in France.
Marie thoroughly enjoyed her day and thanked Branch members for their generosity.
Later, Marie, in a thank you letter said:
A day of wonderful surprises but a memorable and moving event which made me feel honoured and at the same time extremely humbled and a gift I shall always treasure. It was so generous of all the members who contributed to my gift. To invite Cari and Briony and my good friend Ian (of the Taxi Charity) made the day very special indeed and made me extra proud to be a WREN.
The print now has pride of place in her living room.
A great day for an amazing lady and the privilege to share our pride and honour as a ‘special lady’ as a member of our Branch.